Microsoft windows is a software program from Microsoft corporation which makes it easy to use the pc. This type of program is called visual programming. This software simplifies the way we give commands to the computer and interact with it. While windows and some other software programs with graphical user interfaces have been around for many years, windows became popular since its endorsement by IBM in 1989. Now there are several programs written to work on windows and it is becoming standard for user interfaces. Because of its simplicity and versatility more and more users are turning towards windows.
Windows 95 is a program which runs on top of the personal computer’s operating system DOS (Disk Operating System). Basically windows provides graphical user interface. It allows the user instruct the computer using simple commands which do not have to be memorized. We get a choice of things which can be done and we need to select from this list of choices. Choices are shown to us in the form of menus and pictures which are easy to understand. We no longer need to memorize complex syntax of commands or work with manual text to the keyboard. The need to type on the keyboard also reduced as we can select from a list by using arrow keys or a pointing device such as mouse.
We can arrange our work on the desktop using the windows software. Desktop is the word used to denote full PC screen. Each program we want to execute opens a window on this desktop and we can have multiple windows on the desktop at the same time. We can move these windows around, change the size, put them away, bring them up again and switch to another to start working on it . We can copy parts from one document to another document or establish links between the documents.
Windows software provides set of programs which are used to setup , modify and manage the environment for windows accessory programs. These programs come grouped in program groups which are setup when installing windows.
Windows software includes a central program, program manager which manages the windows. Entering windows means starting the program manager and closing the program manager ends windows.
There are number of applications we need to run routinely. These include spreadsheet packages, word processors, page making software packages, presentation packages and database management software…etc. Increasingly these programs are available on windows, in fact some do not work without windows. These programs use the special feature provided by windows to provide users many attractive features. Knowledge of windows is therefore becoming essential even for those DOS users who know the syntax of DOS commands perfectly and are comfortable using the keyboard.
The accessory programs provided with windows give some flavor of the types of features incorporated in other applications developed for windows.
File management and disk management can be handled in a simple way through windows program called File Manager. The file manager shows the directory structure and contents in a way that is simple and easy to understand. File operations such as copying moving deleting and renaming are easy to accomplish. Disk functions can also be handled through the file manager.
All printer related work is handled in a uniform way in windows. Print jobs from various program windows are handled through common facility called the Print Manager.
The windows environment is setup or modified using a control panel where we can decide on our fonts, mouse characteristics, desktop look and feel…etc.
A powerful feature of windows is its ability to copy information across programs. This feature is in-built as clipboard. Programs built to run on windows provide the user with commands to use these features.
Sometimes we may use DOS prompt to execute some programs or actions. Windows allows us to open a DOS prompt window to perform such type of activities.
In addition to these main programs, windows comes with a set of necessary programs for various functions. These are the programs like paint brush, note pad, calculator, write, terminal, clock, recorder, calender, card file, object packager, character map, sound recorder and media player. There are so many games also available to play.